Yesterday brought me long-awaited In the Shadow of the Emperor. So far I’ve marvelled at the bits and read the rules few times, and I must say I’m quite thrilled. It sure looks like an interesting game, with a particularly heavy doze of theme. It sounds so good in theory I can’t wait to see how it turns out in practise. Hopefully I’ll find out tomorrow.
The same package contained Farfalia, a five-player trick-taking game. I’m not sure how useful that’ll end up to be, as the game is basically five players only, but hey — I thought it had something going for it. At least the game has very interesting partnership structures: dealer plays alone against two partnerships. Partnerships change every round, so everybody ends up being paired up with everyone else. Sounds neat.
3 responses to “Shadow of the butterflies”
The shifting partnerships you mention in Farfalia (which I’ve not played) makes me think of Frank’s Zoo. (Which also has the notion of an odd lone player against the other partnerships each round, but can be played with varying numbers of players, not just 5 specifically.)
And of course, there’s Mü, which also has interesting partnerships. But for one reason or another, I haven’t played Mü much. I don’t really like the card art, it’s a bit too complicated perhaps and I think it needs at least the five players. Farfalia is exact five (worse), but easier (better). We’ll see.
I should get Frank’s Zoo, I believe.
There’s also Japanese Napoleon (http://www.pagat.com/picture/napoleon.html), which has shifting partnerships like Mü. I wonder if Frank Matthaus had Japanese Napoleon in mind?
I have never seen a game like Farfalia, with 1+2+2 partnerships and only for 5 players. It looks good.